Redefining Cybersecurity Competitions to Increase Female Participation presented at wicys 2014

by Diane Murphy, Michelle Liu,

Summary : One of the first exposures to cybersecurity for young people is often the cybersecurity competition, offered at the high school and college levels. Most of these competitions have a decidedly “male” focus, based on military principles, emphasizing success as being successful “attacks” to a system. As a result, very few females are attracted to these events and only a few participate. How can that be changed? This work, sponsored by the National Science Foundation (NSF) under award number 1318799, will describe some of our research on cybersecurity competitions, particularly female participation, on our experience with facilitating student involvement in developing the competition platform, and our approach to attracting female high school students to the summer institute.